Sunday, January 3, 2016

Week 72 - Montrose

This was a great week. Of course it was Christmas which made it really good.
Wednesday Dec 23:
We had a long and eventful evening. We made a ton of Christmas cards for people in the area and went around and gave them out that night. We were driving on this country road out to a less-active. We noticed the lights off at his house, so just decided to drop it on the doorstep. When we got up the hill there were some teenagers up there. They were scared and freaking out. They explained that they were being followed and that they went up to the house to see if anyone was home. We looked out on the road and sure enough there was someone parked out there in an awkward spot. We told them to call the police and waited with them. We also calmed them down. When the police came, they were very confused why there were two mormon missionaries standing there. We explained what happened and they let us go. Right after that we were driving to our next destination when we saw a mountain lion run across the road. I was stoked. You don't hardly ever see them that close and live.
Thursday Dec 24: Christmas Eve
It was a good day. We started off the morning with a great district meeting. My district leader and I trained on Justice and Mercy. I gave a training/game where it was a court case. It was detailed but essentially we had Mr. Incredible accused for killing someone but saving 80 people in the process. The idea was to illustrate that he deserved mercy but justice needed to be enacted. Right after me Elder Ostlund, (district leader, one of my favorite elders) talked about how Jesus Christ is the Mediator that allows Mercy and Justice to work together, rather than being opposite forces.
After that we went on a temporary exchange to get some presents for each other. We had dinner with the Woodlands. It was great. We decorated ginger bread houses and did some ridiculous activities afterwards.
Friday Dec 25: Christmas
We woke up to about 11 inches of snow. I woke up around 5:15. Other elders, (Ostlund and Schmidtke) came over to open up presents with us. It was fun and not as lonely as last year. Right after that we went over to their place (they live with a member) to eat breakfast, after which we went to go skype with family. It was great. I enjoyed it the most this time around. It was great to see family and to catch up. Due to the weather we had to cancel our dinner which was far away up in the mountains a little bit. They got over a foot of snow and our little car wouldn't make it, so we ended up having Christmas dinner with the Thuns in the Cimmaron ward. That night we went caroling with the sisters (was going to be most of the district but everyone backed out). Overall it was a great Christmas.
Saturday and Sunday were frankly uneventful. We did however visit with some people who went silent so we will hopefully be teaching them again.
Thanks for all the cards and gifts. This was a great Christmas and I hope you all had a great one to.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 71 - Montrose

This was a very slow week. Primarily because I was ill most of it. I got a cold that kept us home, I also had another In-grown toenail removed permanently along the side so hopefully I don't have to worry about it anymore.
My format will be different this week, because I was home a lot.
Christmas as a missionary honestly has been one of the best experiences of my life. The opportunity to serve God all day long is awesome. I don't have to worry about the clutter. This Christmas I learned a little more about the Atonement and just what Jesus Christ did for all of us. 
The video, Why we need a Savior on brought this into perspective. Imagine we couldn't take back our mistakes. Every pain, sorrow, and word that we ever uttered cannot be remitted. Death is final, no one understands the difference between right and wrong because the Light of Christ is absent. We have no direction and we drift farther and farther away from God, our loving heavenly father. However, God would not allow that to happen.
God runs into a dilemma. He has given laws and consequences for disobedience and blessings for obedience. He has to uphold these laws because it is the only way he can bless us. However we make mistakes, we sin. Because we sin all of us will fall short of the expectations of the law. God has a choice. He can forgive everyone regardless of the choices, which defies the law which means he can't bless us. He could also show no mercy to us and everyone would be damned. This is a predicament. He realized someone had to mediate. Someone had to step up and take all the sins and pains of the world so that he could perfectly understand us, and our intents. He also realized we needed someone to be that great example and for someone to overcome both Physical and Spiritual death. So he sent his son. His first born, who is perfect. It must have been harder than we can comprehend for him to do that. However because he sent his son, we have a chance. Mercy can be given while the law can be upheld. All we have to do is Remember him, love him, and Follow him. It is the covenant we make at Baptism.
I want you all to know that we are children of a loving Heavenly Father. He wants us to succeed. We can only through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. A Savior was born long ago in a far away land.  He was born in humblest of circumstances, and died in the worst. Death was not the end though. He rose again on the third day and lives still today. In the Doctrine of Covenants the Prophet Joseph Smith states that the testimony last of all that he gives of him is that, "He Lives"
He does. I know he is the Savior and Redeemer of all.
This peom was given to us by our mission just now.

In ancient times the cry. "Unclean."
Would warn of lepers near.
"Unclean! Unclean!" The words rang out;
Then all drew back in fear,

Lest by the touch of lepers' hands
They, too, would leopard be.
There was no cure in ancient times,
Just hopeless agony.

No soap, no balm, no medicine
Could stay disease or pain.
There was no salve, no cleansing bath
To make them well again.

But there was One, the record shows
Whose touch could make them pure;
Could ease their awful suffering,
Their rotting flesh restore.

He is coming long had been foretold.
Signs would precede His birth.
A Son of God to woman born,
With power to cleanse the earth.

The day He made then lepers whole,
The day He made them clean,
Well symbolized His ministry
And what His life would mean,

However great that miracle,
This is not why He came.
He came to rescue every soul
From death, from sin, from shame.

For greater miracles, He said,
His servants yet would do,
To rescue every living soul,
Not just heal up a few.

Though we're redeemed from mortal death,
We still can't enter in
Unless we're clean, cleansed every whit,
From every mortal sin.

What must be done to make us clean,
We cannot do alone.
The law, to be a law, requires
A pure one must atone.

He taught that justice will be stayed
Till mercy's claim be heard
If we repent and are baptized
And live by every word.

That is the never - ending gift
That came that Christmas Day
When Mary first held close her Son
And shepherds came to pray.

If we could only understand
All we have heard and seen,
We'd know their is no greater gift
Than those two words - - "washed clean!"

~Elder Boyd K. Packer
I love you all. I hope you have a great Christmas. It is a wonderful time of year, where we can focus on the Savior.
Merry Christmas,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 70 - Montrose

Elder Jensen and Me
This was a slow week, but good.
It started to snow and we got a few inches in Montrose. I also caught a cold so I am a little under the weather. Honestly it is the best week for that because I have my other in-grown toenail removed tomorrow and another doctors appointment for a nasal infection.
Honestly because the work has been slow with the Christmas season and the fact that I don't feel well, I hardly remember this last week. Here are some highlights though.
I was on an exchange with Elder Ostlund. He is an awesome elder that I was able to connect to instantly. Throughout the day it seemed as though nothing went according to plan but we were where we were supposed to be. We decided to do service and could not find a place that was open where we usually would go. We finally went to a small thrift shop and it turns out that the owner had to leave and do something and needed help with changing lights out. Perfect timing. We also helped a member understand what makes a member missionary successful. Truly as a member missionary the only way to measure success is whether you invite someone. Inviting is the first step to accept the gospel.
Another highlight was Sunday. We taught in Relief society about inviting people. The member the previous night that we talked to actually invited her neighbor to the stake Christmas fireside. She taught in Relief Society and gave one of the best lessons I have ever heard. We also had our stake musical Fireside. It was very good.
Yesterday, or Monday, we had our Christmas Luncheon for the missionaries. It was great. IT snowed a lot where we were. We had our President and Sister Murdock there. We had a ton of sweets and great food. We also watched a Christmas Movie about missionaries and had some testimonies. The fun part of it all was the Karaoke. I went first singing O Holy Night. I will try and get a video of it. Overall it was a fun and spirit filled meeting. On the way out it had snowed a few inches and was snowing heavily. We had a few cars stuck and had to push them out.
That was my week. Fairly slow but good none-the-less. I hope you all have a great week as well.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 69 - Montrose

Transfer meeting from  Top to bottom. Left to right.
Smith Perez, Lybbert, Noblott, Forrest, Pulsipher, Tavares,

Elder Scott and me
This was one of the slowest weeks on the mission, for reasons I will determine.
Monday November 30:
It was my last day with Elder Forrest. He has definitely been my favorite companion so far. That night I had an interesting experience. On a mission you are given certain spiritual gifts. These are called gifts of the spirit. They are given to all those who seek after them and have the Gift of the Holy Ghost. We were teaching a lesson when I had a distinct impression to ask a specific question. I usually get these promptings while teaching but this time I could tell the reason why I asked it. It was an interesting experience to discern what that person needed. That is one of the amazing things about a mission. The spirit works through you stronger on a regular basis than any time in your life.
Tuesday December 1:
We had transfers out in Grand Junction. We arrived early so I got to say hi to some people I used to teach, the Davis family, which was nice. Elder Forrest actually ended up going to Ken Caryl Ward, which I used to serve in. I was so excited for him, because that has been my favorite ward. My new companion is Elder Scott from Elmira NY. He has been out about 4 months and is a great elder. I am excited for another great transfer with him. After the meeting we drove all the way to Log hill, which is about 30 minutes from Montrose, for our dinner. After dinner we drove back to Montrose and went with our elder's quorum president to a lesson. They ended up not answering the door, so we went by a less-active in the ward we haven't met. The meeting went excellent and it triggered some good feelings in his heart. He says he wants to come back.
Wednesday Dec 2:It was a slow day. We basically had a Preparation Day for Elder Scott and visited people to introduce him.
Thursday Dec 3:
I woke up bright and early to go get my toe operated on. IT has been in-grown and I decided this time to permanently remove it. They only removed a sliver on the side and killed the root, so hopefully it doesn't grow back. It really hurt. So we spent the day at home, resting.
Friday Dec 4:
It was another slow day. I couldn't walk well and it cramped up a little, we did have our ward Christmas Party. It was great. We did a Night in Bethlehem. They had tents with different food items and a live nativity. We even saw that less-active whom we visited the other night, Ben.
The Grinch who stole my toenail
Saturday Dec 5:
Once again we had a slow day, but one highlight was that we had the opportunity to participate in the Montrose parade of Lights for Christmas. The zone leaders put together a float for the new Christmas initiative, A Savior is Born. We had a live nativity and the missionaries passed out cards. I got lucky and got to sit in the cab with the heat and just wave and yell merry Christmas. It was a very cool experience. What amazed me was seeing the look on people's faces when they saw it. They cheered and said thank you. You could tell these people wanted more Christ in their Christmas. We were the only float with a live nativity.
Sunday Dec 6:
We had a good day. I came to church in a suit with one dress shoe and one flip-flop. I told people it is a mullet, or that is how we do it in California. It was a great fast and Testimony meeting. It was all focused on Christmas and the birth of Christ. That night we also got to listen to the Christmas Devotional.
Anyways that was my week. My toe is doing much better. I might have the other one done in a few weeks. Have a great week. 

Week 68 - Montrose

Hello Everyone,
This week was amazing. One of the best on my mission.
However there is some unfortunate news. We have transfers tomorrow and Elder Forrest will be leaving. I will be staying. He has been my favorite companion. I have grown and learned so much from him. Luckily he doesn't live far from home and might go to BYU or BYU-I. He is definitely a great friend I want to stay in touch with.
Monday Nov 23:
After emailing we hiked with Llamas and the Woodland and Oman family. Pictures are included.
Tuesday Nov 24:
We were going to head out to Ridgway about a 30 minute drive, but Elder Forrest felt prompted to call Tom. We ended up going to his home to teach a lessons. It went very well. We talked about the Plan of Salvation. He even invited us to Thanksgiving dinner. The rest of the day was great. We just kind of followed the spirit. We didn't do a single thing we planned but we were able to teach people and get referrals we never would have expected. I also ended up singing in a little thrift store owned by a member..
Wednesday Nov 25:
It was another one of those days. It is really cool when you get to the point that you are busy all day being led without knowing what you are doing or going. We made contact with people that we haven't seen in a while and even taught someone new. We had lunch at Dennys with a member Kieth and he brought a friend of his. We ended up teaching them afterwards unexpectedly. We also ate dinner at the Iverson's. She just got baptized and we taught her family the 10 commandments using a magic trick.
Thursday Nov 26: Thanksgiving
It was a great day. We started off with a district meeting. During the meeting Elder Forrest and I presented a way to help us teach more simply, which was something we have both been working on. The way we sometimes practice is by teaching a lesson in Charades. When we do this it forces us to think  in the most simplistic way. It works really well and is also a fun game to play.
We ended up having dinner at the Bartons. They are an awesome family. She asked if there were any pies we missed from back home, so I listed a bunch off. It turns out she made them all. We also had our neighbors over (who are the zone leaders). Afterwards we went to Tom's house for some desert. It was great. We met his friend and sang Christmas songs and just talked. He is progressing along great. He is really awesome and has a sincere desire to know if it is true. After all this we ended up helping a member move some heavy things to a new home. We had also helped the Hall's out with their pets for a two days while they were gone. They have a lot. They have two dogs, three cats. five rabbits and about 15 chickens.
Friday Nov 27:
It was a good day. We did some service and some weekly planning. We also had a lesson with Tom again. We brought up baptism again and he said he doesn't feel ready right now, but wants to go through the commandments. We gave him a schedule of the upcoming lessons and commitments involved with them. The rest of the day was stopping by people.
Saturday Nov 28:
It was an interesting day. We went to visit a member in the hospital in the morning. While we were visiting he started to have a seizure. It was a little alarming and luckily he is doing fine now, but it put a damper in our mood the rest of the day. Overall it was very slow.
Sunday Nov 29:
It was a great Sunday service. We had President Atkinson come (2nd counselor in the mission presidency) We also taught 2nd hour about baptism. During the third hour the Bishop and President Atkinson presented the two new videos the church has produced for Christmas. It is something we are using a lot in our work. The videos are A savior Is Born and Why We Need A Savoir.They are on
That was our week. I am excited for this next transfer and just hope I get a great companion.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 67 - Montrose

Hello everyone,
This was a good week, just slow. THis email will be short, because I have little time.
Tuesday Nov 17:
It was a slow day. However one interesting thing to note is that I met someone that has a connection to the family. Their names are the Kramer's. I mentioned that I was from California and his response was, "I used to live in Merced, in fact there was a dentist their that did my teeth with the last name Pulsipher. In fact he was my hometeacher." I drew the connections with him. So Phyllis & Louellis (Probably misspelled those names) Kramer says hi Grandma and Grandpa Pulsipher. Also I guess their son Darren also played football with either Uncle Allen or you Dad.
Wednesday Nov 18:
We had a great busy day. We visited with a Jack in the morning. He is a less active that we have been trying to meet with. We finally found out what he likes the most, conference talks. We also got back in contact with Tom. He was progressing well but then went silent, so we were a little concerned. We decided to stop by and he answered the door and said, "Hey, haven't seen you in a while, come on in." It turns out he was just very very busy. At the end of the message (which was a great powerful message with the spirit there) I played some music on his piano. He really enjoyed that and said he felt someone with that. We explained that the spirit can be felt with the spirit.
Thursday Nov 19:
On Thursday we spent a lot of the day helping someone move. They were a friend of a member and a great family involved in the community. Everyone seems to know them. They had a lot of heavy heavy stuff in their shop. I was very sore by the end of the day.
Friday Nov 20:
It was a great day. We did some weekly planning that I think will really help move the work forward. We then had a Thanksgiving dinner with the Hall family. They are amazing. All of the kids are recent converts and the mom has been inactive for years. They are really strong and soaking it in. We have been teaching the new member lessons to one of the daughters. We had some other elders over and a investigator that was being baptized the next day. They also had their family there who are all amazing as well. It reminded me of the Thanksgiving Dinners we had back home where the missionaries would come over.
Saturday Nov 21:
I have known this but it was reaffirmed on Saturday during an exchange that I love to be really busy. We were running from place to place trying to fit things in, and re-arranging schedules. I actually enjoyed it. I remember when I was in my Newspaper class and I had a queue of people needing my help and had to do a few pages per issue every month. I enjoyed it. I went with Elder Gish in his area. I have served around him in three different zones. I was his district leader for two transfers and he has been mine for two transfers.
Sunday Nov 22:
It was a great day. I actually sang in sacrament meeting. Tom came, as well as three less-active families we have been working with. It was one of the best times I have sung. We also had a homecoming talk and an open house for her after church. We got to meet a lot of people there.
Overall it was a great week. I can't wait for Thanksgiving this week. I hope you all have a great one as well.
One thing I am grateful for is this mission. I am starting to get scared to go home, even though it is 9 months away. I think I am in a good position if that is a fear. Anyways Have a great week.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 66 - Montrose/Denver

So this week was very very interesting. Not a typical missionary week.
 Me and the Andersons.
Tuesday Nov 10: 
We had a zone conference where Wilford W Anderson came and visited and spoke. He is a very humble man. He very kind and the things he said connected really well with me. I also got to talk to him briefly about the fact that he knows Grandma and Grandpa Stiles. He says hello by the way. His focus was talking about the spiritual steps that we need to take in order to return to Heavenly Father's presence. It was very good yet simple. Overall it was a great day.  That night we also got to teach the Northey family. They are a really great family that we started teaching. Overall it was a great discussion. We also got our first snow storm and with country roads it makes things very interesting.
Wednesday Nov 11:
We had interviews with President Murdock. It went well. I always enjoy doing interviews with the Murdocks. I also learned some areas I can improve on. Especially planning. The rest of the day I honestly can't remember.
Thursday Nov 12:
We took a trip out to Ridgway. We were busy all day going from place to place. We started the morning out cutting some wood and laying some gravel out for a member and his neighbor. It was a lot of driving in the snow, which means very slow. We also found out that we would be taking a trip to Denver. Elder Forrest had a Dr.s appointment out in Commerce City which is outside the mission on the other side.
A great view of Mt. Sneffles and canyon.
Friday Nov 13:
We woke up and got in the car. It is very very odd making a road trip as a missionary. It was beautiful. The roads were great but we got to see the mountains covered in snow. We also got stuck in stand still traffic throughout the day. We finally got to Commerce City at 2PM. The appointment went well. We then made our way to the mission office, Kohls to pick up Elder Forrest a Jacket and then on the way to the mission home. We were planning on staying there where there were beds and food, but on our way there we got a call from the Assistants that sister missionaries were staying there. That was a predicament because we then had to find elders we could stay with and navigate without a GPS. We also didn't have a place to eat so we went to Cafe Rio. Right as I was about to pay someone came up and paid for our food. It was funny because we later found out there was a temple trip some people made and they were at Cafe Rio. It was a tender mercy from God. We felt so blessed. That night we went to stay with my trainer Elder Clark, Elder Taviuni, and Elder Didrickson. We slept on the floor which wasn't as fun.
Saturday Nov 14:
We drove back. Got Altitude sickness (at least that is what we thought because we were wiped out with headaches.
Sunday Nov 15:
We had a great Sunday Service. It is funny the lessons you learn in church. I was distracted and really wasn't paying attention to the speakers but however during sacrament meeting I received some personal revelation that had nothing to do with the talks. Church is an amazing place to go to on a regular basis, one for the sacrament, and two for personal revelation.
Anyways I hope you all had a great week. I just hope we don't have to go to Denver and back any time soon.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 65 - Montrose

I'm King of the world.
This was a very slow week. Partly because I was recovering from my ingrown toenail. And also because it was the first week it got cold. Which typically means that people cancel and go into hibernation.
Tuesday Nov 3:
It was a slow day. I couldn't walk well so we spent a lot of the day in the car travelling to the far reaches of our area. We started the morning off doing some service. I took it really easy, cutting some wood for a member. We then had a few appointments and tried people all day long. At one point after lunch we decided to go to a couple members way out there. They are home a lot so we just decided to go without calling. (partly because we didn't have service). We drove for a while when our GPS took us down this dirt road. It kept on taking us down it for about a mile when it got really bumpy and soon a a little canyon started appearing in the middle of the road. I wish I took a picture but it probably was an old Pioneer trail. We eventually got a little stuck and decided to turn around. That is a lot of what our area is like. Anyways it was good day and a little exciting.
Wednesday Nov 4:
It was a slow day and honestly I can't remember what happened. All I remember is that it involved staying in the car most of the day.
Thursday Nov 5:
We went on exchanges on Thursday. I started getting a really bad cramp in my foot for walking on it badly so we stayed home for most of the day so I can ice it. We went through the area book and studied some scriptures. At the end of the day though we taught 3 lessons. They were really great and in one of the lessons our member present brought her kids. He kid was about 10 and he had some really great insights on the Plan of Salvation and could even explain why Nephi had to slay Laban better than we could.
Friday Nov 6:
We had weekly planning which took most of the day. That morning we got a call from someone in the hospital. We went to go give him a blessing. He really appreciated it. That night we had a dinner with a part member family. (whom we went golfing with) We ended up having a discussion on the spirit world and why we needed to be baptized for the dead. It was an interesting discussion and I learned a lot more about the spirit world.
Saturday Nov 7:
I went on another exchange with the Cimmaron elders. It was a great day. I was in there area and we had appointments all day long. We also had stake conference where Elder Rhoades of the Seventy was present. We were warned that we might be called up to bear our testimony. I wasn't but a lot of missionaries were. It was a great conference and he really stressed Sabbath Day Observance (which in case you haven't noticed it is a big push in the church right now). He also stressed Missionary work which was great.
When trying some people we noticed a ledge.
 We took a little break and saw the entire Ridgeway Valley.
Sunday Nov 8:
Sunday was very similar to Saturday with the rest of Conference. We actually had a lot of appointments with members in the evening to share our new Book of Mormon lesson.
That was my week. A very slow week but great none-the-less. It has been getting very cold here and snowed one day this week. I am still Loving this area and my Companion Elder Forrest. Well I hope you all have a great week.
Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher

Week 64 - Montrose

Hello Everyone,
This was a great week. I will try and keep this short because I don't have too much time.
Tuesday Oct 27:
I had my first opportunity to go out to the beautiful part of my area. This is Ridgway and Ouray. I will be sending a ton of pictures today. While there we taught some lessons and did some tracting. A lot of people there go there for a vacation. It was a lot of driving but very beautiful. We also found some strong potentials.
Elder Forrest and I in Ouray
Wednesday Oct 28:We had a great day of teaching people. We have a lot of people we teach on a regular basis. We also taught Tom and invited him to be baptized. He said he would think about it. It is so cool to see the change in him in just a week. He is a lot more happy and even says he is too. We also have a recent convert family we are teaching. They are awesome and we have great discussions with them.
Thursday Oct 29:
We had a zone meeting and then went out to Ridgway. We spent a lot of time traveling. There are a lot of people who live far out there. From our dinner to our next appointment was an hour long driving on dirt roads in the dark. There are also a lot of deer which makes it interesting. Don't worry I am very cautious and drive slow. Once again we had a lot of people to teach that day.
Friday Oct 30:
Friday was an interesting day. It started to get very cold. We had a full day of plans but every single person cancelled on us. This happens though. One highlight was the Trunk or Treat. We had a ton of people there. We even had some less-actives and non-members  come. We had a great family show up early and even help set up. We also decided to decorate our trunk. There should be a picture attached. We won the funnest trunk award. It was tons of fun and great to see so many people there.
Elder Forrest and I with Mt. Sneffles
Saturday  Oct 31: Halloween
It was a good day. We visited some people and knocked some doors. We also invited some of our investigators to a baptism of a little boy in the ward. It was a great baptism but unfortunately no one was able to come. Halloween is an interesting holiday because we really cant be out knocking doors once trick or treaters come out which was about 4:00PM. (which in my opinion is really early). So we spent the evening at a members house.

Sunday November 1:
We had an excellent day. We got a new ward Mission Leader who seems like he knows what he is doing and some other leadership changes. We also did some tracting and met a really nice man who went on about his entire life. It was quite interesting. He said we could come back. I think that sometimes we just need to listen rather than talk. In this case I feel if we talked he wouldn't have let us come back but he trusted that he could open up and talk about himself because we listened.
Monday November 2:
Today was a very interesting day. Just so you know I got an in-grown toenail again and had it removed this morning. It went quite well. We also went golfing with a non-member husband of a great woman in our ward. Elder Forrest loves golfing and because I couldn't walk I got to watch. I actually enjoyed it. The man was very nice and easy to get along with as well.
Anyways that is my week I hope you all have a great week.
Ouray is a small town surrounded by giant mountains

Till next time,
Elder Dallin S Pulsipher